tv NOW With Alex Wagner MSNBC February 20, 2012 9:00am-10:00am PST
ohio and michigan and not backing off of controversial skments made over the weekend. will it do him bad in the general. listen to what he had to say. >> i got criticized by some of our members of the press corp, who have a hard time understanding when you refer to someone's ideology. >> jimmy, are you looking at some of the members of the press corp right now? >> i don't know what that means. we are what that is. whatever that is. look, this is a man that is -- i was in the senate when he was there, he was there for two terms i think 12 years and i was a staffer. and i dealt with him and his staff a bit. usually on still issues p here is what he is known for. partial birth abortion. that sit. that was his legacy in the
united states senate. this is a man running for the president of the united states and he is leading in a state like michigan. i don't get that. >> i want to play some clips of some of santorum's choice quotes. let's hear them now. >> free prenatal testing ends up in more abortions and therefore less care that has to be done because we call the ranks of the disabled in our society. we are not here to serve the earth, man is the objective and i think a lot of radical environmentalists have it up side down t idea that the federal government should be running schools, frankly much less that the governments should be running schools is acronistic >> so many choice pieces to
choose from. what do we think of this? >> i think when rick santorum is calling you an acronistic, you must have a problem. this is a set of world views that are more familiar do 50, or 100 years ago in terms of their content and concern of the debates. if you look at the contraception issue, griz wold versus -- said the government does snnot have e right to tell a woman whether to use it or not. they are contested issues from a long time ago. what we are hearing from him in a candid way, i give him credit for that. it's an honest, passionate presentation of a desire to roll back the clock on social and he had indication policy, 125
years. >> if not more than that. >> i agree. i think it's important to remember that like, he comes from a culture where that is considered a good thing. if you said i want to roll back the clock 50 years, they said yes, let's do that. not all of his views are completely outside the mainstream, i think especially the way he talks about them, there's resonance for people that are christian and believe how he believers, when you are putting them together -- >> when you are contesting not just global warming but the idea that we should not have a public school system and that everyone should home school their children and prenatal exams are an excuse to promote abortion, that is where you run into potential trouble. >> and as one of the women who were duped into careers instead of being home and multipling.
his issues are sort of wanting to send women back to the home to have children. but he seems authentic to conservatives. >> because he is saying what he believes. >> whereas mitt romney he could say the same thing and it would come through as fraudulent. he is saying what he thinks. it's frightening for women and it will hurt them with women voters but he seems honest. >> this is why the republican establishment is out there searching for a candidate. >> they are on craig's list right now. they have a match.com, i'm the gop person to run for president. what is interesting to me is not so much rick santorum's views, his views are not new. but what is interesting to me, is mitt romney is dead silent on these issues. ron paul, dead silent, newt
gingrich, i've not heard from him in weeks. >> has been holding town halls in elephant cages. >> that is interesting. is mitt romney going to come out and say, i do not agree with him? no way. >> they are preserving the chances they may have in a general election. santorum is an different the way he is conducting his campaign. he is speaking the truth of his heart whether people like it or not. expel -- and he will go out there. do you think the white house in their wildest dreams thought they would go against santorum? >> no. and robert gibs had comments on this. let's play his comments. >> i can't help but think that those remarks are well over the line. it's wrong. it's making it hard to face the
issues we face together as americans. >> robert gibbs was responding specifically to santorum's comment on the president's ideology. there are some on the right that think what he is doing in terms of social issues stuff is good. i'll bring to your attention a article about the case for polarized politics. mr. bell sees social issues as a path to the gop majority in 2012 and red has the advantage, by 2004, all the states that bush carried were socially conservative states. they now are sufficient for a majority. so maybe in some weird world in terms of the math this ends up working out for rick santorum. >> it works in the way that having a lot of discussion about gay marriage worked to get george w. bush elected.
if you were someone who wanted a federal ban on gay marriage, a amendment which is what they ransom on, did you not get that. if you are looking on transaction politics where you run on something and deliver it? no. then even the religious folks are getting fooled on this. >> this is about gbringing together the party. they have a diminishing base. they have older white male voters. they are not hurting themselves with women voters how do you bring together the white male vote, the working class vote. >> home schooling. home schooling. >> i would love those white men to stay home and home school their children. >> we have to go to break, i want to leave everyone with the fox news poll from february 15th which shows among rust belt
states obama 43% and santorum at 43%. it will be interesting. romney's roadblocks as santorum is passing him in the poll approximates. and republican concerns are sparking fau ining talk of a br convention, the details on that next on "now." piro.obert over a million people have discovered how easy it is to use legalzoom for important legal documents. so start your business, protect your family, launch your dreams. at legalzoom.com, we put the law on your side.
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talk about michigan and save time for arizona and the troubles that romney is having. what does romney have to do? >> anything above 28%. i don't understand why someone as successful as he is, good looking as he is, he has the most perfect family in the entire free world and only 28% of the country thinks he should be the president. >> he is like the son -- >> he can swing this way, but his feet are in so much cement he cannot get out of where he is because he is not genuine. >> part of what hurts him is things that would help him in the general election. >> no doubt. >> i know people like my parents included would feel comfortable voting for romney, they lean to the left, they do not think estrogen w-- they do not think
geuine. and it's not enough for him to be the front-runner in the nominating contest. >> i wonder how much you think the news that we have today that paul babbu, his arizona coshare is quitting after announcing he is gay and there's allegations that surfaced that he threatened a exboyfriend here with deportation, which plays out like a bad w not saturday night live sketch. it's so bad. >> and drama queen. is this an issue for mitt romney in arizona? >> no because politically it will go away. who among us has not wanted to deport a ex, people understand. >> that is a very, very good point. >> when i say, it's private drama that has spilled out
public publically, the allegations are out there but the facts are not known. >> he has been strident on immigration and cracking down on illegal immigration and the party itself has been less tolerant to gay and gay men and civil justice issues. >> not of late. historically. if you are going to be the front-runner for the gop nomination and you aring to be openly gay or not and you are going be to in a relationship with an illegal person or not and then you threaten this person with deportation or not, then i'm sorry, it makes you a hypocrite on every level. this is the problem -- and i have lots of gay friends that are republicans. lots. i've dated half of them. if you ask on the capitol hill, are there more gay republicans or democrats, it's republicans. at the end of the day.
either your party dp-- and the platform, what will it take about equal rights for gays? if santorum is the nominee? what about this guy. come on, can we get into the 21st century here. >> and given the level of dissatisfaction. let's talk about the brokered convention. ari, you dropped the hot piece of news, you were a delegate tracker. even if mr. romney was able to extend his lead by winning all nine primaries from now through super tuesday, he would emerge with just 370 pledged delegates which is fewer than needed. this will drag on and as it has, people are getting less and less excite besidd about the candida they have to pick from.
>> this is a slow calendar, because typically elections turn on momentum. since the state races have been made, it's the idea that all the voters have their say, it almost gets settled in the first five of six states. if expectation was a big one in 2008, where people were talking about who are super delegates. it's usually about money, momentum, and then attention settles in. when we were counting delegates in the kerry, campaign, we clinched and we got the vibe of being the nominee. here there are about 2061 delegates to go. and it takes 1,000 to clinch. >> so 100 is a drop in the bucket. >> if you have been watching the race on any medium, you would any that romney was a lot
further ahead for the reasons i said, we cover the races in a different way. if it turns into a delegate hunt, it's a hunt where santorum is down by 30 and gaining. >> isn't it different the opposite of 2008, i mean the race between hillary clinton and barack obama went all the way to may because you had two candidates that had passionate camps. neither wanted to let go. this race is dragging on because nobody has a passionate camp. >> can you imagine if someone said we need to get john edwards back in the race. >> right. >> it's the idea that gop elders, are literally on craig's list drafting n ining for this. the door is an inch open but they are talking about someone else coming. >> briefly. yes there's a problem that mitt romney does not have a lot of excitement. but there's years where there's not a lot of excitement.
i worked for john kerry but during that cycle there were democrats that were not excite besides him but the rates -- excited about him but the race played out differently. >> john kerry lacked just enough excitement, because did he not have that extra push that you need in the end. >> it's true, that mitt romney is sort of the john kerry of this race, except more wooden. he is carved or granite or something like that. >> completely carved of stone. after the break, we will talk good guy that is not carved of stone. i'm not weighing on what he is carved up. gingrich set s his sight on his home state. we will take a look next.
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if he can't carry his home state, i think the rational for a romney candidacy, you don't see what he says the next morning. >> are you willing to say if you lost georgia you'll drop out? >> no, i'm not willing to say anything. >> winning or losing your home state means different things to difference candidates gingrich is in georgia today. is his strategy going to pay off? i love that sound because it is so gingrich. if mitt romney does not win his home state, never mind the fact that he has millions dollars, he should not stay in. but who knows what happen s if
stay in. >> he could make a sale, he has made a lot of sales the morning after. >> we are not going interpret that. >> he is a talker. that is what he does best. >> he does talk well. >> he does, to get the moon fully into the conversation. and i think that he is going to be in the race for as long as he can. he will be dragging like his broken body across the highway in tampa. i for one am happy to see it. >> is clearly going to make a play for the south, right, jimmy son of the south? >> here is the problem, he cannot win in the south if santorum is doing what he is now. santorum, being from pittsburgh is more southern in his conservative social views than gingrich is. >> and he does not have the liability of having been married 80 times. >> that has not hurt him that
much. the money thing is definitely a question. we now know that sheldon adelson, who has been a long-time floater of funds is cutting another $10 million check. and salon.com said gingrich is pitching hijds as a candidate for conservatives wlo want a true beliefer, but it turns out the guy keeping the gingrich campaign alive is precisely the kind of republican that romney is. he is making the contention that adelson is in because he is fine with romney or gingrich but he does not want santorum in there. so thus, the establishment guys are supporting newt gingrich in a sort of weird way >> i want find it odd that gingrich is associating himself with the anti-establishment he was the speaker and he lives in
washington, d.c. >> does not live in georgia. he lives in virginia. >> if you look at the polling on newt gingrich too. it's odd, sort or to begin with. when he had the surge, that it happened at all. what people liked about him was his experience in washington. they wantsed him go back to washington and tear it up. it has less to do with his ideals. and it has to do with the fact that he fulfill as conservative fantasy of beating up barack obama. of going in and slapping him around. >> i think that is true. i think that races are less been sharp ideology differences and more about the tone. mitt romney is happy, too happy for this environment. newt gingrich is angry. >> and santorum is earnest. >> i think he is outraged which is different than angry and i think in this mood, after people
got through the mood, and the anger in media, we are seeing the anger not lasting the same way the outrage is. santorum is experiencing the close up and one of the failures in the process is that he has not gotten before. but he is outraged in a manner that connects with an underdog sensiblity in the party that is difference than yelling at the press. >> when we talk about resources to carry him through the south. he has 12. -- i'm sorry. $2 million, and $12.7 raised. he is still in debt, of the people reimbursed first, by the gingrich campaign, newt gingrich tops the list getting $115,000 he reimbursed himself for expenses. $1 million in unexplained expenses.
but, it is an interesting po picture of a man. >> this is newt gingrich, he is a hot mess. he has always been a hot mess, he would be a hot mess in the white house. but there's something fun about him. and i agree, i think that what people like about him on the right, they think he will get on the stage and say food stamp president to barack obama. >> i was going to wrap up the segment. hot mess is something along with the liberal media that will be repeated in the coming weeks and months. coming up. it's getting ugly from the santorum candidates about the president's faith and burning a flag in tribute to whitney houston, are we reaching a new low in in country? we are going to ask dylan ratigan. next on "now." so uh this is my friend frank and his, uh, retirement plan.
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what he is saying is he is questioning the president's faith, that is a new low in american politics. >> it's time to have a debate on our political questions but not question each other's character and faith. >> that was some of what we heard this weekend respondsing to a comment by rick santorum who said the president had phony theology. >> we must out smart the liberals. we must out smart the stupid people that are trying ruin america. >> joining the bullpen is dylan ratigan, author of a book that is five weeks to "new york times" best seller list. thank you, dylan for joining the program. >> it's a pleasure to be here. >> we were talking about the sort of heated rhetoric of not
only this presidential race but in american poll titics in gene. as we look at the landscape, do you think it's an uncommonly partisan moment for the country or do you think it's part and parcel -- >> i think that, i don't know that i'm qualified to offer that analysis. if you look at the little bits of american history and how nasty it was when this paper and that paper and i was like, an a marie is not even a human being. women are property, what are we talking to her for? and he is saying i'm gay and -- gay people don't exist as human beings. okay. i mean, so where we are today -- >> we have come a long way, baby. >> so proportionally. you can make a strong case. we are better off than we think. my criticism i guess is that there seems to be a strong -- there's no seriousness, no one is serious. some people are outraged and
angry and some have hurt feelings and some like it hot and some like it cold. no one is serious and the reason that this country is so frustrated both with washington, d. d.c., across the board and new york city across the board who are the home of the banks and media is that the banks, media and political culture is not serious. if you have been in the smallest of businesses or things that have to be taken seriously, the way you make decisions is a different way. >> dylan, i would say if we are talking about the bogeyman out there, there's ire directed toward wall street -- >> i'm not talking about ire, i'm talking about actually solving problems in america. i don't care if you agree with my opinions to banks or on any of my opinions. i care whether we are in a theater of conversation that has
seriousness that something is, we need 30 million jobs, we have 150 million people in america who have as much money as the richest 400 people, we have a tax code that is littered with different sets of rules for everything, none of them are being addressed. >> part of addressing that problems and working to solve them, isn't it sort of coming together? >> they have to. >> i think that actually one of the things that dylan is hitting on and the problem with the gop primary, this is theater. what we are seeing with santorum and with gingrich, and mitt romney being dragged into it, very unwillingly is addressing stuff that normal americans do not care about. lunar colonies, before you serious? and gay marriage, what does that have to do with me getting a job. >> the society has devolved for two sets of rules.
>> in 2008, the contest was about idea and serious problems and solutions to problems. this primary is just a clown car and people see it that way. >> look, i think that people want solutions but they need an outlet for their anger and we talk about the rhetoric around the president and i think if you look at, whether we are talking about santorum and the comments and jan brewer and the way she treats the president of the united states, there's a brazenness that has not existed thus far. >> were you around for bush? >> i don't think -- >> did you see what keith olbermann used to say about bush every night? >> i think the challenging of his religion and whether he was born here. you can contest the results of the 2000 election, but i don't think the rhetoric was as nearly as pointed as it is. >> i do not necessarily disagree
with that. first, i wish emily post were a live. and anybody that does not know who she is, you are in worse shape than washington, d.c. it's simple. you should treat people like you want to be treated. there was a time when i sat on the senate floor and watched the member goes at each other with the microphone on, and your policies are going to bankrupt america, or you'll abort children and then they would put them down and walk over and say, that was fun. let's go get a drink. that doesn't happen anymore. they don't live in washington. they go home every weekend. they have absolutely no interest or desire to know who their wives are, their children, who they care about. >> that complains a lot. >> it's about humanity. >> and all of them are receiving their money from the exact same people -- remember one last fact and i'll shut up. 196 people according to ari
berman, playing with you there. 196 people are providing 80% of the money for all of the super pacs, so that the point is, it's not just not serious, oh, the republicans are being goofy with each other, the president has not been serious about fraytradd the banking structure and president bush was not serious about it before this president. >> let's listen to what mccain said regarding super pacs this weekend. >> i've been in tough campaigns. i don't think that i've seen one that was as personal and as characterized by so many attacks as these are. and frankly one of the reasons is, the super pacs. >> i mean, they are, are they not, the great enablers for all of this. you look at mitt romney and his job, the super pac is his way to
attack. >> the separateness in washington, and how people do not talk about each other, it comes back to dylan's point, it's because of the money. the reason you have a lack of social ability they have to go home to raise money. >> if you were -- >> they have to go out. >> they have to walk outside the building. they have to raise money all the time and raise money by appealing to the hard core people and to the money men and the people that care about the policies that will keep them rich. >> taxes, trade and banking. so with all of that, the manipulators those are your financers of government. >> it's not that we are deeply divided on ideas at that level -- >> and the other thing, and we talk bit, is the redistricting, you are not longer running in diverse communities, it's very one sided. your constituents are all of one thing or nothing of the other. >> what makes that worse is that when you have, i mean, if you do
all the gerrymandering, you'll have lefties living in new york or san francisco. it's how human beings live. what is putting forth the rigging of power is that you have gerrymandered districts where there's never a primary challenger for the incumbent party's primary, as a result, 80% to 85% of the time, the job never changes hand because ari was granted the seat through noblity and as such, he will never have to account to anybody but democratic leadership. that is where the break down is. >> you brought up a good point, we will discuss it in great detail after the break. when we also talk about gas prices. can you say $4 a gallon? why you could be hearing more
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republicans may have a bill board advertisement for this year's election in every town in america. the price is up 17 cents from a month ago. we talk about the potential pit falls for the president's re-election, speaker john boehner has encouraged them to embrace the pain at the pump. saying this is a debate we want to have. not a surprise. there's a lot going into the rise in the gas prices. as we look forward to the next few months. what do you think the president has most to worry about and i'll throw foreign policy out on the table here as well? >> i think the neat little
country of iran and what israel may or may not do, and whether we participate, is part of it. every time that bill clinton got in trouble, what did we do? >> bombed somebody. >> and it worked every single time. i'm not suggesting that we need to go bomb iran. >> and i think that u.s. officials have said publically, israel, do not bomb iran. >> there's something going on here that is fascinating. gas prices go up and gas prices go down. we have more coming -- complaining that gas prices are going up, if you have enough supply and you have the demand, you think the price would be down. >> gas prices are a global market. >> there's no refineries. >> don't we build those? >> we stopped permitting them
because of intoxification of our country. we do that for other countries. while we have all the oil that you are referring to we have very little interest in the risk. we sell it to other refiners and we buy it back >> do you think that president obama is blamed for this? do you think it's problem? >> without question, there's no issue to me that is more indicative of our government's lack of seriousness going back to my original point than the complete and utter lack of any cohesive strategy for energy independence. we are the laughingstock of the world. we have known in problem has been around since the late 1970s, we have a wide variety of technologies that can be
employed. i'm sure all of us and point that out. a wide variety of other choices as it comes to efficiency upgrades, our efficiency levels are stuck in 1950, japan and every country in the world has moved forward. when i say not seriousness, i do not care about civility. i care about seriousness, because if i have two people getting bought off having a civil conversation about nothing, and two people that are talking about a complete and utter lack of energy policy -- >> if you talk about being serious, specifically regards to energy and gas prices, let's listen to what the gop has had to say on the matter of late. >> our friends in the news media will probably go nuts and start saying you cannot get back to $1.13 that was in the old endays, i think we can easily
deliver to $2.50 a gallon. >> michele bachmann said you'll see gas come down blow $2 a gallon again. this seems like a win/win situation, whether y-- when you are running for president. >> but the statement is, what they are saying and neither newt gingrich will end the problem in the middle east. >> it's like running for president of your class, and that is how they are treating it, to dylan's point, with that level of seriousness, the gas pric prices crosses the iran problem. clinton bombed countries to get on the of domestic problems. but i think that right now, people are not looking at iran as a place to exercise our macho foreign policy, we are instead
thinking about our gas prices. that is a much more dangerous place for obama than what is happening over there in terms of foreign policy. i also think however, that when the gop bet on this kind of thing, they can get in trouble. >> and we have seen an aggressive posture on santorum's part vis-a-vis iran. coming up, we will talk about what now. and in the spirit of the holiday, we are talking about lincoln. do not miss this segment. >> coming up next, i'm andrea mitchell, coming up next on "andrea mitchell reports" culture wars, santorum versus president obama s that the road to republican victory in we will talk to santorum's press secretary. plus, nuclear standoff, the white house goes to israel, and israel prime minister schedules a visit here. and should the u.s. arm syrian
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welcome back, time for "what now?" we honor president's george washington and abraham lincoln on calls to scrap the penny. i'm outraged about this. did you know it costs 2.4 cents to make a money and 11.2 cents to make a nickel. why do we have the penny? this makes no sense. it makes no sense, i understand that there's a pricing problem. >> penny candy. >> which is not a penny anymore. >> we use the penny for the same reason that santorum says that kids have summers off. there's traditions that are hard to break t thing about coins, if you want to get thought perfectly deep on it -- >> you as a former coin collector.
>> and i want to get to that. >> recovering coin collector. >> you are such a dork. >> this is a symbol of something of value and it was originally lower than the value it represented and over time, the metal has made it higher in value. wait your turn, i'm going get into my coin collecting story, when i used to collect coins, the quarter was made out of silver, right, because there was so much silver and there was less inflation, that that was actually less than the price of a quarter. >> this is ratings gold. >> people would melt down the quarter to get the silver. >> and they used to do that with the copper penny. now it's sort of covered in copper. i'm going to have to move this conversation. >> this is where we start to talk about ron paul. ron paul wants us to carry around gold. that is awesome. small nuggets of gold. we have now entered our second full week of i'm going the stay
it it, lin-sanity. it was an interesting series of, i don't know what to call it, espn had to fire someone who work on the online site for writing a racist story regarding jeremy lin. it brings up the things we have in the media, racial stereo types and race and athletics. i want to know what you are making of lin-sanity and the media reaction to it. >> i think he is a great athlete and he continues to do well, i like the new york nicks and at the end of the day, he does not bring the cost of gas down. >> he is worth more than he is getting paid. >> i would assume so. >> and it only costs 11 cents to mint a lin. he is worth more. it's full circle. >> will the first ever supreme
court justice being retiring. we now, the supreme holds undue sway some say, but they are taking up health care and immigration this summer. what does it mean, does this help, does this gin up enthusiasm for obama getting re-elected? >> the presidency is one thing and one thing only for me. it's about who you pick for the supreme court. at the end of the day, those justices, have to tell you who gets equal rights. santorum, that should scare the entire country. >> thanks again to ari, anna marie cox, dylan ratigan and jimmy. you can catch dylan here three hours from now, and every
weekday at 4:00 eastern time. i'll see you back here tomorrow at noon, we will have a full panel. until then, follow us on twitter. "andrea mitchell reports" is next. greetings to you andrea. >> hi, alex, happy president's day to you and who is the most elect able republican candidate, santorum or romney, we will talk about the possibility of a contested convention and the odds of a new republican entering the race and a look at john glenn's first trip to orbit p 50 years ago today, and iran and syria, next on "andrea mitchell reports." the employee of the month isss...
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